A 92-year-old Lincolnshire woman has been swindled out of £23,000 in less than a week after receiving a number of fraudulent telephone calls.
The victim, from Grantham, had received calls from March 3 from a man claiming to be from Barclays Bank.
He convinced her that there was a Barclays internal investigation into activity on her bank account and that she should transfer her money into another account to protect her assets.
He provided her with the new account details. She was reluctant to discuss this with anyone else as the offender persuaded her that the whole investigation was highly confidential.
Not content with £23,000, the fraudster has continued to call the victim in an effort to extort more funds.
The matter has now been referred to Action Fraud and an investigation is underway.
Lincolnshire Police say this type of offence is becoming increasingly common, with swindlers making multiple calls, often claiming to be from a bank or that they are police officers, until they latch onto an elderly or vulnerable potential victim. They work from a script and can be very plausible and persuasive.
A Lincolnshire Police spokesperson offered the following advice:
“Please be aware that no bank, building society, financial organisation, public body or the police will ever contact you in this way, or ask you to transfer funds or reveal account numbers, passwords or PIN numbers.
“Please try to look after elderly or vulnerable family members, neighbours or friends. Try to ensure that they do not fall prey to these despicable criminals who will take an their life savings without a second thought.
Please see advice from Action Fraud on their website.